A BING CROSBY DISCOGRAPHY
A LISTING OF THE STUDIO RECORDINGS AND SONGS FROM RADIO SHOWS AND FILMS
Discography was originated by J. Richard Baker and was taken over for a while by David Currington, who represents International
Club Crosby in Australia and New Zealand.
Malcolm Macfarlane, the Editor of BING magazine, now maintains the database and anything that will add to the historic accuracy of this listing should be advised to him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
THE STATISTICS are stupendous.
RECORDINGS - 383 recordings in the top 30, 41 reaching No. 1. And that is just in the USA. 23 Gold and Platinum records and music sales estimated at anything between 500,000,000 and 900,000,000. The first to receive the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. More - much more -
FILMS - For the years 1934, 1937, 1940, 1943-1954 he was in the top 10 at the box office. He introduced four Academy Award-winning songs - "Sweet Leilani" (1937), "White Christmas" (1942), "Swinging on a Star" (1944), "In the Cool, Cool, Cool of the Evening" (1951). Received an Oscar for Best Actor in Going My Way (1944) and nominated for Best Actor for The Bells of St. Mary's (1945) and for The Country Girl (1954).
RADIO - hosted top rated radio shows for over twenty years. Many more figures could be quoted but that is not the purpose of these pages, which is to list the recordings and radio shows for which records have been issued. In the big numbers department, no one else comes close despite claims made on behalf of others. You don't have to believe me - just look at the statistics on the sites listed on the Crosby Fan World Pages.
This database has been compiled on software named "Brian" which was developed by Steve Albin, who has given considerable help in furthering the project. Details of "Brian" and the many other Discographies compiled on it can be found at www.JazzDiscography.com.
This update is dated November 10, 2023.
1 THE STUDIO RECORDINGS
All recordings are listed by sessions under dates, recording companies, venues, matrix numbers and CD issues in groups:
1a The Pre-Decca Years to 1934.
1b The Decca Years 1934 to 1955.
1c Post-Decca Years 1956 to 1977.
2 THE RADIO SHOWS
Song titles only are listed. Signature tunes, the comedy routines, "sketches", and musical items where the only participants were guest stars are NOT listed unless the "guest" solos on an item included in a complete listed recording of the show in which case the item bears the suffix (G). Dates shown are broadcast dates, with recording date noted when different and known.
For a complete history in narrative form of all the radio programmes, including notes on comedy routines, sketches, contributions by guests, and newspaper reviews of the time, together with much other information, look up the extraordinarily comprehensive and painstaking work of Lionel Pairpoint on the BING magazine website.
2a Early (Pre-Kraft Music Hall). Very few recordings survive and those unlikely to have survived are not listed.
2b Kraft Music Hall. 5 December 1935 to 9 May 1946 plus two later Al Jolson shows with Bing as guest.
Most of the early and middle period shows have not survived, and my listing is not therefore complete. With the arrival of John Scott Trotter as musical director from 7 October 1937, many of the musical items were recorded, and it is believed that around 500 titles survive. All musical items with Bing are listed from that point. A number of complete shows have also survived, but there is no consistency and there are a great many gaps. Inclusion in this listing is no guarantee of survival, unless specifically shown that a CD or LP has been commercially released.
2c Philco Radio Time. 16 October 1946 to 1 June 1949
All the programmes in the main sequences from this point on were pre-recorded for broadcast and all the shows have survived. All are therefore listed. Substantial parts of both musical and non musical items have been issued on LP and CD. Where complete shows or major parts have been so issued, it is noted, but individual non-musical items are not shown unless there is some special feature,.
2d The Bing Crosby Show for Chesterfield. 21 September 1949 to 25 June 1952.
As for the Philco shows, all the programmes were pre-recorded for broadcast and all the shows have survived. All are therefore listed. Substantial parts of both musical and non musical items have been issued on LP and CD. Where complete shows or major parts have been so issued, it is noted, but individual non-musical items are not shown unless there is some special feature,.
2e The Bing Crosby Show for General Electric. 9 October 1952 to 30 May 1954.
Some of these shows, particularly the later ones, used recordings from a 'library' and some identical titles are repeated, not all of which have been identified. Nonetheless the shows are listed in the form in which they were broadcast.
2f The CBS Radio Shows (The Bing Crosby Show 1954-1956, The Ford Road Show 1957-1958 and The Crosby-Clooney Show 1960-1962)
This group is treated as one. The shows were all compiled from pre-recorded tracks assembled into a 'library', many songs being used on several occasions, with inserted dialogue between Bing, Ken Carpenter and Rosemary Clooney. As listing by broadcast dates would entail endless repetition of the same recordings, the listing instead follows the format of the studio recordings, by recording dates.
2g All other radio shows and miscellaneous other material, including some television.
Includes AFRS, Mail Call, Lux Music Theatre and other radio material, plus a few miscellaneous items with no other natural home. Bing appeared in many radio programmes as host, principal performer, guest or interviewee. Some have been the subject of issues in series where other stars were the hosts, with Bing only on isolated tracks. It is not possible to identify and list all such appearances.
3 FILM RECORDINGS
Recording sessions for titles included in film soundtracks and publicity discs released by film studios, where the music has been commercially released on CD.
4a Songs. Alphabetical listing of all songs with the date of performance.
4b Artists. Alphabetical listing of all artists with a note of their involvement.
4c Song Writers. Alphabetical listing of writers and their songs.
4d Abbreviations used for roles and instruments. An explanation of the three character abbreviations for the roles or the artists.
Restated by label, record title and catalogue numbers with track titles. Where the title originates from a radio broadcast the fact will normally be evident by the note (eg KMH 75 or Philco 1, the number showing the place in the sequence of programmes). A matrix number indicates a studio recording except for the later years where matrices were not allocated. Some recordings from radio were remastered for official commercial issue
5a CD Issues. MP3 downloads are also shown where no other direct CD equivalents exist. Many of the CDs are also available as downloads from various internet sources, but it is impractical to list these.
5b LP Issues - mainly covering only radio or non-commercial recordings.
INFORMATION, ERRORS AND CORRECTIONS
Contributions to correct errors, and also to expand on the list of issues, particularly where the titles are otherwise unrepresented are welcome. In the meantime thanks are due to the several people, now too many to note individually, who have contributed corrections and ideas or indicated their support. It is reassuring and refreshing to know that so many people worldwide are interested in the Crosby legacy.
CREDITS AND REFERENCE MATERIAL.
Some reference material and much else, together with links to various fan sites and sources of information on related pages at "Crosby Fan World"
Keen collectors are in debt to those who issued the "Chronological" series on the "Jonzo" label and their successors 'Through the Years' on the Sepia label, between them giving a complete high quality sequence of recordings from the start of Bing's career up to the end of his association with Decca.
A warning. There are many issues, both CDs or LPs, that contain inaccurate or misleading information in sleeve notes. Typically they relate to recording dates but also extend to incorrect titles and claims of origin. The issues of radio material are most vulnerable to such errors but 'official' releases are not immune, though issues from the mainstream companies specifically aimed at keen collectors (regrettably few for radio material) - are usually well researched, and issues in which certain prominent members of the ICC were involved have a "quality seal". For the rest, grateful as one might be for the fact of the issue, caution is needed.
For any comments, contributions or corrections, email Malcolm Macfarlane at email@example.com